GM’s Chevy Volt Plug-In Chief Tony Posawatz Retires

General Motors Co. said the engineer who oversaw the Chevrolet Volt plug-in sedan’s development and production for the past six years has left the company.

Tony Posawatz, 52, vehicle line director for the Volt since 2006, has retired from Detroit-based GM, said Ryndee Carney, without elaborating. The company, the world’s largest automaker by sales volume, isn’t releasing a statement regarding his retirement, she said.

Posawatz, who’d worked for GM for three decades, “decided to take some time to pause and assess the situation and see what opportunities exist” beyond the carmaker, said Automotive News, a trade publication that reported his retirement earlier yesterday, citing an e-mail message from Posawatz.

His decision comes after GM Chief Executive Officer Dan Akerson cut his sales forecast for the Volt. Volt sales this year aren’t on pace to meet Akerson’s goal of 60,000 globally in 2012, of which 45,000 would be delivered in the U.S.

Through May, GM sold 7,057 Volts in the U.S. The company is scheduled today to release sales results for June.

The 2013 Chevrolet Volt travels 38 miles (61 kilometers) on a single charge of its lithium-ion battery pack, and has a U.S. efficiency rating of 98 miles per gallon-equivalent, according to GM’s website.

GM fell 0.8 percent to $19.57 at the close in New York. The shares have declined 3.5 percent this year.

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